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Arsenal and Everton are set to go toe to toe in the race to sign James Rodriguez from Real Madrid, according to the Mirror.

The Colombian has never been among the favorites under Zinedine Zidane. He was shipped out on a two-year loan to Bayern Munich, at the end of which the Bundesliga champions opted against making the deal permanent for €42 million and brought in Philippe Coutinho on loan from Barcelona instead.

In Rodriguez’s absence, Zidane left the club and then returned, with unsuccessful spells under Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari squeezed in between, and the attacking midfielder apparently finds himself in the same situation as before.

Arsenal have a good relationship with Real, having already brought in Dani Ceballos on loan, and though Florentino Perez would like to dispatch Rodriguez permanently for around €40 million, he would be open to a loan with a view of a permanent deal in the summer.

On the other hand, Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti has worked with Rodriguez both at Real and Bayern and was reportedly keen on bringing him to Napoli while his reign there lasted.

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